Television Category

Massachusetts Broadcasters Association 'Sound Bites' Annual Meeting and Mingling Event, October 30, 2014

Posted October 30, 2014


Kansas Association of Broadcasters Convention, October 19-21, 2014, DoubleTree by Hilton Airport, Wichita, KS

Posted October 19, 2014


New Hampshire Association of Broadcasters Annual Meeting, Appreciation Night and Granite Mike Awards, October 16, 2014

Posted October 16, 2014


Arizona Broadcasters Association 25th Annual Broadcasters Hall of Fame Luncheon, October 16, 2014, Talking Stick Resort, Scottsdale, AZ

Posted October 16, 2014


Alaska Broadcasters Association Convention, October 16-17, 2014, Sheraton Anchorage Hotel, Anchorage, AK

Posted October 16, 2014


Connecticut Broadcasters Association Convention, October 9, 2014, Hartford Hilton, Hartford, CT

Posted October 9, 2014


New York State Broadcasters Association Digital Leadership Academy, October 2-3, 2014, Ritz Carlton, White Plains, NY

Posted October 2, 2014


Pre-Filing and Post-Filing License Renewal Announcement Reminder for TV Stations in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont

Scott R. Flick Lauren Lynch Flick

Posted October 1, 2014

By Lauren Lynch Flick and Scott R. Flick

September 2014

TV, Class A TV, and locally originating LPTV stations licensed to communities in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont must begin airing pre-filing license renewal announcements on October 1, 2014. License renewal applications for all TV stations in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont are due by December 1, 2014.

Pre-Filing License Renewal Announcements

Stations in the video services that are licensed to communities in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont must file their license renewal applications by December 1, 2014.

Beginning two months prior to that filing, full power TV, Class A TV, and LPTV stations capable of local origination must air four pre-filing renewal announcements alerting the public to the upcoming license renewal application filing. These stations must air the first pre-filing announcement on October 1, 2014. The remaining announcements must air on October 16, November 1, and November 16, 2014, for a total of four announcements. A sign board or slide showing the licensee's address and the FCC's Washington DC address must be displayed while the pre-filing announcements are broadcast.

For commercial stations, at least two of these four announcements must air between 6:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. (Eastern/Pacific) or 5:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. (Central/Mountain). Locally-originating LPTV stations must broadcast these announcements as close to the above schedule as their operating schedule permits. Noncommercial stations must air the announcements at the same times as commercial stations, but need not air any announcements in a month in which the station does not operate. A noncommercial station that will not air some announcements because it is off the air must air the remaining announcements as listed above, i.e., the first two must air between 6:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. (Eastern/Pacific) or 5:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. (Central/Mountain).

Continue reading "Pre-Filing and Post-Filing License Renewal Announcement Reminder for TV Stations in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont"


Biennial Ownership Reports are due by October 1, 2014 for Noncommercial Radio Stations in IA and MO and Noncommercial Television Stations in AK, Am. Samoa, FL, Guam, HI, Mariana Is., OR, PR, Saipan, VI and WA

Scott R. Flick Lauren Lynch Flick

Posted October 1, 2014

By Lauren Lynch Flick and Scott R. Flick

September 2014

The staggered deadlines for noncommercial radio and television stations to file Biennial Ownership Reports remain in effect and are tied to each station's respective license renewal filing deadline.

Noncommercial radio stations licensed to communities in Iowa and Missouri and noncommercial television stations licensed to communities in Alaska, American Samoa, Florida, Guam, Hawaii, the Mariana Islands, Oregon, Puerto Rico, Saipan, the Virgin Islands, and Washington must electronically file their Biennial Ownership Reports by October 1, 2014. Licensees must file using FCC Form 323-E and must also place the form as filed in their stations' public inspection files. Television stations must assure that a copy of the form is posted to their online public inspection files at https://stations.fcc.gov.

In 2009, the FCC issued a Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeking comments on whether the Commission should adopt a single national filing deadline for all noncommercial radio and television broadcast stations like the one that the FCC has established for all commercial radio and television stations. In January 2013, the FCC renewed that inquiry. Until a decision is reached, noncommercial radio and television stations continue to be required to file their biennial ownership reports every two years by the anniversary date of the station's license renewal application filing deadline.

A PDF version of this article can be found at Biennial Ownership Reports are due by October 1, 2014 for Noncommercial Radio Stations in Iowa & Missouri & Noncommercial Television Stations in Alaska, American Samoa, Florida, Guam, Hawaii, the Mariana Islands, Oregon, Puerto Rico, Saipan, the Virgin Islands, and Washington.


Kentucky Broadcasters Association Convention, October 2014

Posted October 1, 2014


Annual EEO Public File Report Deadline for Stations in AK, Am. Samoa, FL, Guam, HI, Mariana Is., MO, OR, PR, Saipan, VI and WA

Scott R. Flick Lauren Lynch Flick

Posted October 1, 2014

By Lauren Lynch Flick and Scott R. Flick

September 2014

This Broadcast Station Advisory is directed to radio and television stations in Alaska, American Samoa, Florida, Guam, Hawaii, Iowa, the Mariana Islands, Missouri, Oregon, Puerto Rico, Saipan, the Virgin Islands, and Washington, and highlights the upcoming deadlines for compliance with the FCC's EEO Rule.

October 1, 2014 is the deadline for broadcast stations licensed to communities in Alaska, American Samoa, Florida, Guam, Hawaii, Iowa, the Mariana Islands, Missouri, Oregon, Puerto Rico, Saipan, the Virgin Islands, and Washington to place their Annual EEO Public File Report in their public inspection files and post the reports on their station websites.

Under the FCC's EEO Rule, all radio and television station employment units ("SEUs"), regardless of staff size, must afford equal opportunity to all qualified persons and practice nondiscrimination in employment.

In addition, those SEUs with five or more full-time employees ("Nonexempt SEUs") must also comply with the FCC's three-prong outreach requirements. Specifically, all Nonexempt SEUs must (i) broadly and inclusively disseminate information about every full-time job opening, except in exigent circumstances, (ii) send notifications of full-time job vacancies to referral organizations that have requested such notification, and (iii) earn a certain minimum number of EEO credits, based on participation in various non-vacancy-specific outreach initiatives ("Menu Options") suggested by the FCC, during each of the two-year segments (four segments total) that comprise a station's eight-year license term. These Menu Option initiatives include, for example, sponsoring job fairs, participating in job fairs, and having an internship program.

Continue reading "Annual EEO Public File Report Deadline for Stations in AK, Am. Samoa, FL, Guam, HI, Mariana Is., MO, OR, PR, Saipan, VI and WA"


Maine Association of Broadcasters Convention, September 26-27, 2014, Fireside Inn, Portland, ME

Posted September 26, 2014


Oregon Association of Broadcasters 2014 Fall Conference, September 25-27, 2014, Sun River Resort, Sun River, OR

Posted September 25, 2014


October 1 Must-Carry/Retrans Elections Drive the Future of Local Broadcast TV

Scott R. Flick

Posted September 18, 2014

By Scott R. Flick

Few dates on the broadcasters' calendar are easier to miss than the deadline for TV stations (and a few fortunate LPTV stations) to send their must-carry/retransmission election letters to cable and satellite providers in their markets. Because it doesn't occur every year, or even every other year, but every third year, the triennial deadline can slip up on you if you don't closely monitor our Broadcast Calendar. For those that haven't been paying attention, October 1, 2014 is the deadline for TV stations to send their carriage election letters to MVPDs. The elections made by this October 1st will govern a station's carriage rights for the three-year period from January 1, 2015 to December 31, 2017, and this will be the first set of election letters that stations must immediately upload to their online public inspection file at the FCC.

I noted in a post here three years ago that the impact of these elections is becoming more significant with each three-year cycle. In particular, that post focused on the fact that network-affiliated stations can no longer consider retrans revenue to be "found" money, but instead as revenue essential to both short-term and long-term survival. Short-term, in that stations must compete for programming and advertising against cable and satellite programmers that have long had two revenue streams--advertising and subscriber fees. Long-term, in that there was little doubt that networks were looking to charge affiliates more for network programming by taking an ever larger share of retrans revenue, and that it was only a matter of time before networks began selecting their affiliates based not upon past performance, but upon which station could bring the best financial package to the network going forward.

As we've learned over the past year in particular, that means not just negotiating the best retransmission deals possible, but sending an increasing portion of those revenues to the network. Wells Fargo analyst Marci Ryvicker, who will be one of our speakers at the 2014 Pillsbury Trends in Communications Finance event in New York next month, noted that pattern just a few weeks ago. Using CBS's recent projections on the overall revenue it expects to receive from affiliates, she was able to calculate the monthly affiliate cost for CBS programming at $1.30 per subscriber by 2020. Add to that the station's costs for negotiating retrans deals, as well as the increasing cost of producing local programming and securing attractive syndicated content, and it is clear that no network affiliate can afford to be cutting substandard retrans deals and hope to survive in the long term. MVPDs may grumble about those "greedy stations" during retrans negotiations, but generating the revenue necessary to retain the programming that attracts cable, satellite, and over-the-air viewers (not to mention advertisers) is not an optional activity for local TV stations.

The impact of this is not, however, limited to purely matters of retransmission. Yes, broadcasters can no longer afford to enter into amateur retrans deals that threaten to alienate their networks by providing below-market rates, or which sloppily authorize retransmission or streaming rights far outside the local broadcaster's market (this mistake becoming even more consequential if the FCC moves forward in eliminating the network non-duplication rule). The bigger trend is that these economic forces are driving consolidation in the TV industry.

Building large broadcast groups allows co-owned TV stations the critical mass necessary to negotiate difficult retrans deals against the much-larger cable and satellite operators, and, where necessary, to withstand the economic impact of a retrans impasse when it happens. Similarly, larger TV groups are better positioned to negotiate the best possible programming deals with their networks (keeping in mind that "best possible" isn't necessarily the same as "good").

Single stations and small station groups routinely have to punch well above their weight by employing smart executives and counsel with deep experience in retrans negotiations to survive in this increasingly harsh environment. That is what makes the FCC's prohibition earlier this year on certain joint retrans negotiations, as well as current efforts on Capitol Hill to broaden that prohibition, so perverse. By eliminating one of a small broadcaster's best options for cost-effectively negotiating viable retransmission agreements, the government is pushing those broadcasters to sell their stations to a larger broadcaster (or some would say, to the government itself). In the current environment, a station that fails to sell to a larger broadcaster possessing the skill and mass necessary to effectively negotiate retransmission agreements risks losing its network affiliation to just such a station group, precisely because that group can frequently deliver better retrans results.

So as you send out your elections this year, keep in mind that while the election process itself hasn't changed, what you will need to do afterwards has changed dramatically. More to the point, think hard about what you need to be doing with your retrans negotiations if you still want to be around in three years to send out that next batch of election letters.


Alabama Broadcasters Association Engineering Academy: TV, September 8-12, 2014, ABA Training Center, Hoover, AL

Posted September 8, 2014